Video game addictions -

Video game addictions

Video gaming can be a lot of fun, but it can also become a dependency - just like alcohol or drugs.

Web producer Nate Hall knew he had a problem with an addiction to video games.

"I'd come home and if there was like a day where the wife's not home, I'd just go in and play for hours and hours," said Hall.

Nate embraces the gamer label, but he now realizes he may have been hugging that badge of honor a little too tight.

"I've tried to quit several times, and usually I go for about a week or two, and I find I'm getting really stressed, I get very irritable," said Hall. "I guess it's closer to like impulse control disorder with gambling."

Dr. Arman Schacter, a psychiatrist, says, "We see more and more folks that would end up spending all day long in front of a computer screen. And not necessarily for work, but just for entertainment, almost like an addiction."

So how do you know if gaming is becoming an addiction?

If you find yourself spending more time with the video game controller than with your family, if you think about games constantly even when you aren't playing them, or if you become irritable after going long periods away from gaming - it may be time to ask your family or a therapist to help.

Nate found a very easy way to break his gaming habit - he's twelve pounds and four weeks old.

Nate says, "I plan to really watch him and let him get into [gaming], but you know, encourage sports and encourage going outside to play and hopefully he'll grow up and be normal."

Copyright 2011 America Now. All rights reserved.

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